Spanish politicians are in uproar over the bonuses that Spain will receive should they win the World Cup in Brazil.
Captain Iker Casillas and vice-captain Xavi agreed a deal yesterday with Jorge Perez, the secretary general of the Spanish football federation, regarding payments the players will be given this summer.
Each player and technical member of the Spanish squad will get €720,000 if they win the World Cup – more than double what their Brazilian (€330,000) and German (€300,000) counterparts will receive if they lift the trophy instead.
Fifa have increased the prize money that the winning country will receive to €27 million – a 37% increase on 2010 – while the Spanish deal represents a 20% increase compared with the bonuses the players received four years ago.
The deal has been met with fierce criticism by politicians in Spain with Carlos Martínez Gorriarán of the UPyD party calling the sum “excessive” and in “another world”.
Catalonian party ICV also lambasted the deal and called for the Spanish government to intervene and stop the bonuses being awarded to the players.
The average gross monthly salary in Spain in 2013 was €1,634 compared to €1,972 in the rest of the EU and €2,574 in Germany. Meanwhile, unemployment levels in Spain stood at 5.93m people.
Criticism of the deal could also been seen on social media with Duran i Lleida, head of the Catalan Nacionalist political group (CiU) tweeting: "Spain will pay more than double the bonus that Germany will for the football World Cup. Are we twice as rich as Germany?"
However, Spain coach Vicente del Bosque defended the sum during a press conference this week.
"We want it all to be entirely transparent. Hopefully we'll win and we can bill the treasury for what we've earned,” he said.
The Spanish football federation also backed the deal saying that Spain’s success in Brazil would bring more sponsors, more money and, as a result, more taxes for the government.